Legends of the Raven: One
THE ELVES ARE DYING.
The rivalry between the four colleges of magic has brought misery and war to Balaia, and throughout it the Elves have remained apart. They have watched, aloof and untouched, from their homeland of Calaius as human dynasties came and went. Until now. Suddenly, the Elves are dying in their thousands, seemingly struck down at random.
Ilkar, an Elven mage, is uniquely placed to find the cause of this plague and put an end to it. For Ilkar is one of The Raven: a tiny mercenary band of warriors and mages, bound together by a vow stronger than blood. Over many years their prowess has become legendary. But like elves, even heroes are mortal ...
Barclay uses complexly threaded plot lines to follow several heroes, villains, and ordinary people as they attempt to rebuild their lives in the aftermath of the terrible war described in Barclay's Chronicles of the Raven trilogy. After the temple to the elven god Yniss is desecrated, a strange plague known as Elfsorrow begins to ravage the countryside. Led by the Unknown Warrior, the Raven, a group of mercenaries, works to save the elves. Meanwhile, antimagical forces led by Selik of the Black Wings are trying to convince the local barons that the common people have lost their trust in mages and the colleges of magic must be destroyed to save the world. Real enjoyment of this volume requires both familiarity with the previous trilogy and a commitment to reading future installments.